Dinucleotide repeats in the human surfactant protein B gene and respiratory-distress syndrome

J. Floros, S. V. Veletza, P. Kotikalapudi, L. Krizkova, A. M. Karinch, C. Friedman, S. Buchter, K. Marks

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85 Scopus citations


Pulmonary surfactant, a lipoprotein complex, is essential for normal lung function, and deficiency of surfactant can result in respiratory-distress syndrome (RDS) in the prematurely born infant. Some studies have pointed towards a genetic contribution to the aetiology of RDS. Because the surfactant protein B (SP-B) is important for optimal surfactant function and because it is involved in the pathogenesis of pulmonary disease, we investigated the genetic variability of the SP-B gene in individuals with and without RDS. We identified a 2.5 kb BamHI polymorphism and studied its location, nature and frequency. We localized this polymorphism in the first half of intron 4 and found that it is derived by gain or loss in the number of copies of a motif that consists of two elements, a 20 bp conserved sequence and a variable number of CA dinucleotides. Variability in the number of motifs resulting from either deletion (in 55.3% of the cases with the variation) or insertion (44.7%) of motifs was observed in genomic DNAs from unrelated individuals. Analysis of 219 genomic DNAs from infants with (n = 82) and without (n = 137) RDS showed that this insertion/deletion appears with significantly higher frequency in the RDS population (29.3 as against 16.8%, P < 0.05).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)583-590
Number of pages8
JournalBiochemical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1995

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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